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Thread: NDI for Sports

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    Registered User GThomas's Avatar
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    NDI for Sports

    Has anyone tried using 1 Tricaster to act as the sort of headend that sends all camera signals back to a centralized control room for a sports broadcast? We currently use a Mini to produce different sports broadcasts of games, but are looking to build a control room. Would it be practical to buy a second Tricaster to convert the cameras to IP to send to the main building on campus where our other Tricaster produces the actual show?
    Gabe Thomas

  2. #2
    I've been speaking with colleges and some sport conferences about this, part of the answer depends on what are overall needs are.

    You can use multiple TriCaster like you mention and this is a good solution if overall needs call for multiple TriCaster available for times you might have multiple events going on.

    If all you need is just inputs, then you might want to look at getting NewTek Connect Pro and building a system with a supported capture card (like a BMD, Matrox or Magewell card) that you can setup at the head end and send all the NDI feeds back to your control room.
    Kane Peterson
    Key Accounts Sales Engineer
    NewTek, Inc.

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    Registered User GThomas's Avatar
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    i've considered that, as we really only need it for inputs/outputs. I'm basically looking for a way to take the Tricaster out of the pressbox and set it up in a classroom so it can just pull cameras over the existing network between the pressbox and the building. My concern with building our own box with Connect Pro is reliability. What kind of specs would you need on a computer to effectively push 3 cameras to the Tricaster and receive 1 stream back at the pressbox for our PXP people? I just feel like the Tricaster is better designed for that, but maybe I'm wrong.
    Gabe Thomas

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    Hi Gabe and Kane. I am also interested in this! I did some testing recently at our local high school. We were able to connect cameras from the field and have them sent back to the control room in the press box through NDI. My next test will be to hook the cameras up at the basketball gym, run them on to the network and then back to the football press box. Then finally, across town at a another county school on the same network.

    All this sounds great in theory but I am really waiting on someone to come up with a communication solution that works off NDI. For me, without communications in place having those clean camera signals mean nothing. I have also not tested a remote location program monitor but I am confident that work great just by the post some others have left. I still believe NDI is the future and school setting are the perfect place for it to benefit the most.

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    NewTek System Integrator PIZAZZ's Avatar
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    It all depends really on your network structure. If you are on a large campus with multiple network sections then you might run into challenges. If your campus IT folks can put you on a dedicated subnet and/or VLAN then it will definitely make things easier.

    As far as comms over IP, that is super easy and actually rather affordable now. VCOM or Unity Intercom are the two versions we use and sell. VCOM gives you a true Matrix style setup that is amazingly powerful. Unity gives you a more traditional PL (PartyLine) but with 6 separate channels.

    My favorite by far though is a hardware based approach via Dante beltpacks from Studio Technologies. The beltpacks are available in 2 channel or 4 channel versions. A little more expensive than a ClearCom or RTS beltpack but WAY more flexible. Sounds better in my opinion too. We just installed a system with these beltpacks and a Dante equipped Soundcraft Expression. The ability to put anything anywhere into anyone's ears is just amazing. Used the StudioTechnologies 214 announcer stations over Dante too. Awesome setup.

    Sorry I got off track on this thread...


    GThomas, a TriCaster mini would hands down be the best bet for you to do what you are wanting to do. Compact, Robust, and completely capable. We have been doing exactly the same thing on several of our production events.
    Jef Kethley
    PIZAZZ
    www.pizazz.com

    Using:
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    Panasonic UB300 4k cams
    Tactical Fiber/converters, SDI2NDI converters, NDI-Viewfinder, and NDI2HDMI

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    Registered User GThomas's Avatar
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    Glad it seems to be working well for you. I'd love to hear from you when you are able to test it in the basketball gym, as going over our school's network would be our only choice. Thankfully, they've run fiber to a switch in the pressbox.

    We've never had communications capabilities, so I guess it's not crucial for us, but we would like to see some NDI comms as well. My thought would be to turn to Dante audio for comms. Not sure if anyone here has tried that, but maybe some of the belt packs from Studio Technologies would work.

    EDIT: PIZAZZ beat me to the Studio Technologies stuff :-)
    Last edited by GThomas; 08-03-2016 at 09:14 AM.
    Gabe Thomas

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    NewTek System Integrator PIZAZZ's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GThomas View Post

    We've never had communications capabilities, so I guess it's not crucial for us, but we would like to see some NDI comms as well. My thought would be to turn to Dante audio for comms. Not sure if anyone here has tried that, but maybe some of the belt packs from Studio Technologies would work.
    See above... They definitely work.
    Jef Kethley
    PIZAZZ
    www.pizazz.com

    Using:
    All models of TriCasters + 3Play, IPSeries
    Panasonic UB300 4k cams
    Tactical Fiber/converters, SDI2NDI converters, NDI-Viewfinder, and NDI2HDMI

  8. #8
    Registered User GThomas's Avatar
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    Two questions for you, Jef.

    1. What acts as the sort of "hub" of your Dante intercom? Is there a base station, per say, or do you just route everything through your mixer? (IE: How does one create different "channels" of Dante intercom?).

    2. Any reason you would suggest a TC mini over a custom built computer with Connect Pro?
    Gabe Thomas

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    NewTek System Integrator PIZAZZ's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GThomas View Post
    Two questions for you, Jef.

    1. What acts as the sort of "hub" of your Dante intercom? Is there a base station, per say, or do you just route everything through your mixer? (IE: How does one create different "channels" of Dante intercom?).
    I will give you the basics how we have it setup for our production arm doing live sporting events.
    All the beltpacks and annc boxes attach to the deployed fiber and cat5 based network.

    You use the Dante Controller to do all the crosspoint patches from device to device. To create the "Partyline" where everyone can listen and talk on Channel 1 we use one of the 14 aux mixes from the SoundCraft Expression via Dante. We can then add in the Annc Talkback, nat microphones, PGM audio, anything we want into CH 1. We also have just PGM audio piped into CH2 so if the beltpack user wants to control how much PGM audio he hears he just turns up or down CH2's volume knob. CH2 is patchable so if the EIC engineer needs to talk directly to a camera op he can ISO directly to that person and talk privately. With the patching capability of Dante you can have separate audio into the beltpacks Left ear and Right ear. One model 374 is used in Master Control in order to allow the director to iso directly to individual users and/or announcer talent.

    I will attach a pic of the Dante Controller layout to hopefully illustrate it a little better for you.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Quote Originally Posted by GThomas View Post
    2. Any reason you would suggest a TC mini over a custom built computer with Connect Pro?
    I have tried and failed to find the necessary hardware to build anything as small and compact as the TriCaster mini to do 4 SDI inputs and 2 outputs over NDI. We have a 2U rackmount we have been using to do 4 SDI to NDI input conversions. While cheaper to do than a Mini, it is no where as easy to deploy. If you have a mini or the budget to buy one to use in this situation, go mini.
    Last edited by PIZAZZ; 08-03-2016 at 10:14 AM.
    Jef Kethley
    PIZAZZ
    www.pizazz.com

    Using:
    All models of TriCasters + 3Play, IPSeries
    Panasonic UB300 4k cams
    Tactical Fiber/converters, SDI2NDI converters, NDI-Viewfinder, and NDI2HDMI

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    Gabe I will let you know as soon as I test. It actually could be sooner than later. I plan to setup a high endzone shot for football. The closest connection is the field house which is connected to the gym. This is a great example for why I could use comm through NDI. The camera itself will be like 400 to 500 ft away in a straight line but more like 1000ft away if I were to run cable around the press box and out of the way. I just am not going to run that much XLR. I may just have him on a cell connection or something.

    I like the Dante option but it is pretty expensive. One benefit to me personally is that NDI makes things easier and cheaper. If it is harder or more expensive I normally look for another option. I am currently using a mobile box by Eartec. Works great for small crew events but not great for larger events or noisy environments. I like the idea of VCOMM but would it require two separate Ethernet lines? I have some catching up to do on the networking audio side.

  11. #11
    NewTek System Integrator PIZAZZ's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Radio_TVPat1982 View Post
    I like the Dante option but it is pretty expensive. One benefit to me personally is that NDI makes things easier and cheaper. If it is harder or more expensive I normally look for another option. I am currently using a mobile box by Eartec. Works great for small crew events but not great for larger events or noisy environments. I like the idea of VCOMM but would it require two separate Ethernet lines? I have some catching up to do on the networking audio side.

    No, network is not point to point... Just drop a network switch nearby and add in the devices you need. The StudioTech 370 beltpacks do need PoE (power over ethernet) so that is something to consider. A simple 8 port TPLink gigabit switch with PoE is rather inexpensive. Under $100
    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

    You run one Cat5 from your network tie in to this switch and then spool off of it the necessary connections to Comms or an NDI machine or whatever.

    Keep in mind that with the Dante comms solution there is not a Master Station brain to buy. So while the beltpacks might be a little more than a ClearCom, you will not have the expense of a master station or frame.
    Jef Kethley
    PIZAZZ
    www.pizazz.com

    Using:
    All models of TriCasters + 3Play, IPSeries
    Panasonic UB300 4k cams
    Tactical Fiber/converters, SDI2NDI converters, NDI-Viewfinder, and NDI2HDMI

  12. #12
    Registered User GThomas's Avatar
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    We don't have a 3 play right now, but if we get one, can it also receive the cameras as an NDI input?
    Gabe Thomas

  13. #13
    3PLAY must use the physical inputs for recording replays. The NDI input on Mini, 440 and 4800 models is used for the DSK and is not recorded.

    You could build a NewTek Connet Pro system with a quad output SDI card in it, which could function as a NDI to SDI converter to then go into 3PLAY.
    Kane Peterson
    Key Accounts Sales Engineer
    NewTek, Inc.

  14. #14
    Registered User GThomas's Avatar
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    Kane-

    Thanks for the clarification. Can I ask why the 3PLAY doesn't get the same NDI functionality as the Tricaster? It seems to me that it wouldn't be much different than adding them as inputs on the Tricaster, but perhaps I'm wrong.
    Gabe Thomas

  15. #15
    LiveSet Making Machine joseburgos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GThomas View Post
    Has anyone tried using 1 Tricaster to act as the sort of headend that sends all camera signals back to a centralized control room for a sports broadcast? We currently use a Mini to produce different sports broadcasts of games, but are looking to build a control room. Would it be practical to buy a second Tricaster to convert the cameras to IP to send to the main building on campus where our other Tricaster produces the actual show?
    A little late but a few weeks ago I did a 12 camera switch with 8 cameras connected to TC860 and four to TC460. I used NDI on TC860 to give me cameras 9-12. It was an RC car race for VW;
    VW Rival Road
    Although I did not make any technical test for delay, I, nor no one else, noticed any perceivable delay and if there was, it would have shown as the velocity of the cars associated with the small curving formula style track, would have shown if there was. I mean I was hot punching buttons as fast as I could keep up with the race and it worked great.
    Client was super impressed!!!
    Jose Burgos
    NewTek Certified Trainer
    NewTek Certified on all TriCaster's
    NewTek Training & Certification Testing
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